A Kid At Heart

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I wonder how many of you remember Statler and Waldorf?  Probably not by name, but by image you may. Statler and Waldorf are a pair of Muppet characters, two grumpy old men, who heckle the Muppets from their perch in a box at stage left! For example, Statler, “They all good things must come to an end.” Waldorf, “So what’s that got to do with this show?”  Their constant complaints and zingers were funny to me when I watched that show with my kids. Now that my friends and I are approaching their age, the humor is often a little too close to real life. It’s all too easy for us to slip into the role of a critic of the world we live in at this time. But, critics don’t create good, do they?

Don’t you love the wonder that a child brings to this Christmas season? They delight in the bright lights, bubble over with excitement, and listen to the Story of a Baby in a manger with awe.  Jesus asks us to live with the faith and trust of a little child. One day when some children gathered around Him, the disciples tried to chase them away. He said, “These children are the kingdom’s pride and joy. Mark this: Unless you accept God’s kingdom in the simplicity of a child, you’ll never get in.” (Luke 18:16-17, The Message)  To be clear, the Lord is not recommending childishness to us. There is no charm in whining or tantrums.

A week from today we will celebrate the pivotal event of human history, the arrival of God in a tiny baby, born to a peasant Mom, given a father’s care by a local carpenter, with a mission to change the destiny of humanity! Think about the implications as explained by Paul in this passage.  “When the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” (Galatians 4:4-6, NIV)

Jesus did not come just to give a nice story to the ages. He came to set all of Creation right, to make it possible for us to be children of God, who come to Him, as our Father, not as our Judge. Lord, give us the faith of a child to receive that inheritance, to accept the place You offer to us through Your Son, Jesus.

You may object to those thoughts in the spirit of Statler and Waldorf. “Jerry, the whole world’s gone to Hell. It’s a terrible generation that is shaping the way we live now. Things have never been this bad.”   To that I’d say that you need to know your history a little better. You need not go back too far to find horrible wickedness. The 20th century was one of the bloodiest in history, if not the worst, with two World Wars, and civilian suffering on a global scale!  In saying that I am not minimizing the challenges of the day. Sensuality, greed, hatred, and rejection of the Truth of God is rampant. Religion that is form without substance has taken hold in so many lives. But … the Gospel of Christ invites us to hope for the Kingdom come!

Pray for the revelation of Jesus and His salvation to come to us anew this Christmas season. Don’t be a grump!  If you’re burdened for your family and their refusal of God’s grace, make it a matter of prayer, not a subject of endless condemnation and criticism. The word from the Word is a simple and short one today. “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” (Romans 12:21, NIV)

________

Love Came Down To Bethlehem

(Matt Maher’s sweet song of Christmas)

Love came down to Bethlehem
While the world was sleeping
Love came down to make amends
For all creation’s weeping

He that sang the stars to life
He the Word became a cry

Rejoice Rejoice
Glory to God hallelujah Gloria

King of heaven’s high estate
Child in lowly manger
His the priv’lege to forsake
To welcome in the stranger

Born to heal the bonds of men
Born that we’d be born again

Rejoice rejoice
Glory to God hallelujah
Heaven and nature singing together
Glory to God hallelujah Gloria gloria

Rejoice rejoice
Glory to God hallelujah
Heaven and nature singing together
Glory to God hallelujah

Heaven and nature angels and shepherds
Wise men and beggars praise to the Savior
Forever and ever gloria Gloria gloria

Jon Guerra | Matt Maher © Be Essential Songs (Admin. by Essential Music Publishing LLC) I Am A Pilgrim Songs (Admin. by Essential Music Publishing LLC)

CCLI License # 810055

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